Alberta forum explores transforming its province into a financial hub

Nov 25, 2009 | Government News

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Alberta Finance and Enterprise Minister Iris Evans is meeting with over 40 senior officials from Alberta’s financial services sector to discuss how to make the province a financial hub within Canada.

The roundtable, scheduled for November 26 in Calgary, will help industry and government align their strategies and actions to enhance the financial services sector in Alberta. Specifically, two niche areas where Alberta has an opportunity to become a global expert and leader are energy finance and risk and financial management.

“Having a strong financial services sector is important to the future economic diversity and prosperity of Alberta,” said Evans. “Working together, industry and government can build on the expertise we have in this province to create a truly world-class financial sector.”

The global economic downturn has proven that financial risks have become more complex and interconnected, Evans said. Organizations like Macquarie Capital and the Alberta Investment Management Corporation, who will be represented at the roundtable, have proven that the financial services industry can continue to succeed in Alberta in the new global economic environment.

“There is a tremendous amount of energy-financing activity in the province,” Evans said. “This means we do not have to build from the ground up in establishing expertise on financing deals, knowledge of the market, and an understanding of the volatility of the industry.”

A stronger financial services sector will help diversify the provincial economy and make Alberta more competitive in the global economy, Evans said. The sector itself will grow and, because finance is an accelerator and enabler of industry, it will support other sectors in Alberta.

The financial services industry in Alberta is made up of approximately 5,100 firms, including all six major Canadian banks, one of Canada’s largest institutional investment fund managers (Alberta Investment Management Corporation), and 12 of the top 20 investment banks in the world.

The Government of Alberta has a clear plan for a strong economic recovery. The Way Forward will bring Alberta back into a surplus position in three years by trimming government spending; using cash reserves to protect key programs; continuing to invest in public infrastructure; and ensuring that our province’s industries are competitive and continue to attract investment to provide jobs and prosperity.

Media inquiries may be directed to:
Bart Johnson, Communications Director
Alberta Finance and Enterprise
[email protected] 

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